Western Cape on track to roll out Pfizer vaccine on Monday

By Kelly Jane Turner Time of article published May 12, 2021

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The Western Cape is on track to launch phase two of the Covid-19 vaccine roll-out on Monday and will be administering the Pfizer vaccine.

Chief of Operations at Western Cape Department Of Health, Dr Saadiq Kariem, said those over 60 are encouraged to register on the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) as it will be one of the key actions to prevent the third wave in the country.

Kariem said he is increasingly convinced that the country is on the brink of the third wave.

“We are a bit worried because for the last few days, we've begun seeing some signs of an increase in the cases. We haven't yet met the definition for an alert or a resurgence yet, but the week-on-week increases and positivity rates have increased,” he said.

“The increase has mostly been in the Cape Winelands region, the West Coast region, and the metropole, in particular, in the northern and western sub-districts.”

Around 194 000 people over the age of 60 have registered on the EVDS system, however, the province’s target is to vaccinate around 752 000 people.

“We've got 16 potential sites in the province and we are just looking at them to see which of the sites will kick off on Monday,” said Kariem.

The Sisonke implementation study, which started in February aims to conclude by the end of this weekend.

The vaccine roll-out seems to be finally gathering momentum because on Tuesday, South Africa recorded the highest number of vaccines administered in one day, about 19 142.

“So far we've been using Johnson & Johnson vaccine for health-care workers but the Sisonke programme is going to end on the May 15 or 16. Then from Monday onwards, we will start with phase two.”

While active cases in the province are relatively low with about 2 458, some areas are showing signs of an increase.

“If I look at the provinces around the country from the data that I can see, it appears that the Free State is already in a third wave, and certainly in the Northern Cape. I think it's just a matter of weeks before we are officially into the third wave in a number of provinces including the Western Cape,” he said.

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